- Russia plans to start coronavirus vaccine clinical trials in the fall 2020.
- The vaccine is modeled after the genomes published by the Shanghai lab.
- John Hopkins created an interactive coronavirus tracking tool on the global scale.
St. Petersburg Research Institute of Vaccines and Sera FMBA of Russia is working on creating a vaccine for coronavirus. The vaccine is planned for the fall of 2020. Additionally, the clinical trials will begin in the winter months including preclinical tests on mice. It will take several more months. Thus far, the vaccine is supposed to be readily available in the Summer 2021.
It is assumed that the vaccine will protect people of different ages. The vast majority of cases are older than 30 years. In addition, according to the registration rules, the vaccine must first be tested on healthy adults, and only then on children.
The vaccine is based on the Chinese scientists that decoded the genome of the new coronavirus and published it in an international database on January 12, 2020. The information is enough to create a vaccine without the strain. The Shanghai laboratory in China, where researchers published the world’s first genome sequence of the deadly coronavirus, was shut down the following day after releasing this information. Chinese scientists submitted the gene sequencing data for posting on Virological.org, a hub for prepublication data designed to assist with public health activities and research. The full genome sequence was release by Professor Yong-Zhen Zhang, Shanghai Public Health Clinical Center & School of Public Health,Fudan University, Shanghai, China.
The BioRxiv paper by Lam et al has trees built from subgenomic regions indicating that in many parts of the genome there seem to be two major clades. But recombination between those clades has happened, as is illustrated by the similarity plot of the YN2018A.MK211375 virus (right).
The Phylogenetic analysis of the Coronavirus with the genomes available from the Shanghai lab was analyzed by Andrew Rambaut at the University of Edinburg. Phylogenetic analysis is the means of estimating the evolutionary relationships. In molecular phylogenetic analysis, the sequence of a common gene or protein can be used to assess the evolutionary relationship of species. The lack of diversity is indicative of a relatively recent common ancestor for all these viruses, according to Professor Rambaut.
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What this means is that from the reports of spread and numbers of confirmed cases, it is human-to-human transmission at this time and there is no evidence of an animal being involved, at least in the current situation.
There are a myriad of labs around the world, working to create a vaccine against coronavirus. At this time the virus continues to spread and so far it has not been stopped. There is no possibility of stopping the virus quickly. In the US, coronavirus has reached 12 States already. The global epidemic is a concern and at this time is a real threat to human health and global economies.
It is plausible to expect the epidemic will be curbed in due time. For now it’s best to be alert and monitor the situation.